This camp will qualify you as a British Sub Aqua Club Snorkel Diver. Aimed at beginners, the course will cover practical skills and theory sessions. Each day will take you on a new adventure at a magnificent Pembrokeshire coastal site. Time out of the water will be spent learning about marine species, marine conservation and viewing the ocean from land along the Pembrokeshire coast path. All equipment can be provided.
Tutor: Fiona DayFiona is a seasonal tutor at FSC Dale Fort. She graduated from Plymouth University in 2019 with a BSc in Biological Sciences. Fiona was formerly a Higher Education Placement Student at Dale Fort. Her interests lie in ecology, marine biology, citizen science, and public engagement. During her time as a placement student she carried out biological monitoring on a non-native seaweed (Sargassum multiculum). Her work was presented at the Dale Fort Marine Symposium in 2018 and published in Field Studies Journal later that year. Her dissertation explored the theme of citizen science and its role in biological monitoring – this work has subsequently been published in her university’s student journal and presented at the Millport Marine Symposium. Fiona is passionate about citizen science and making environmental education accessible to all. She is a lead volunteer for Surfers Against Sewage, and has led a number of beach cleans, amongst other community events
Sunday: Arrive 3-5pm rooming and basic orientation. 5:30pm welcome talk Intro to the course and BSAC, followed by ice breakers
Monday Morning: BSAC Theory Lesson 1 – Our BSAC Centre and snorkel diver training. BSAC Theory Lesson 2 – Snorkeling equipment and signals then issue equipment. Snorkel session at Castle Beach, a sandy and rocky bay next door to the field centre. BSAC Practical Lessons 1 and 2.
Monday Afternoon: Talk on tides and zonation (not adaptations), rummage on Black Rock in each of the shore zones, recording species distribution, guest speaker talk on species. Followed by species poster.
Monday Evening: Poster presentations or guest speaker.
Tuesday Morning: BSAC Theory Lesson 3 – Snorkeling science and plankton sampling 09:30-10:30. Snorkel session around the local pontoon/jetty, practicing entry techniques – BSAC Practical Lesson 4.
Tuesday Afternoon: Snorkel session at St. Brides, a sheltered bay with rocky platforms and sandy BSAC Practical Lesson 3.
Tuesday Evening: Talk on Plankton – the drifters of the ocean. Time in lab to view samples with the microscopes.
Wednesday Morning: Snorkel session at Martins Haven, a rocky bay with kelps forests in the Skomer Marine Conservation Zone. BSAC Practical Lessons 5 and 6.
Wednesday Afternoon: Coastal walk spotting seabirds, seals and cetaceans. Investigating the population size of crabs around dale pontoon along with crab watch data collection followed by Lincoln index.
Wednesday Evening: Guest speaker – on applications of snorkeling/diving for underwater research.
Optional Quiz night.
Thursday Morning/Afternoon: Skills review – planning and leading a snorkel session at West Angle Bay/Stackpole Quay. Beach games and lunch on a sandy beach followed by participant lead snorkel an area with rocky outcrops and platforms.
Thursday Evening: Group campfire on a local beach.
Friday Morning: Marine conservation, threats to our oceans and further opportunities that can further your interests in the marine environment. Photos of the week, review of the course and presentation of certificates. Course finishes at 12 noon.
All participants must be medically fit for snorkelling and be able to swim 50m unassisted. Sites may change depending on weather conditions. If snorkelling activities have to be cancelled, alternative marine themed sessions will be organised.
Accrediting AgencyDuke of Edinburgh Award
Before You Attend
Start and Finish Times
Resident visitors are requested to report to the main office upon arrival for registration between 4.00 – 5.30pm. There will be a welcome talk at 5.30pm and dinner will follow at 6.00pm. Breakfast will be at 8.00am. The course ends at 12 noon on the last day - you will have a packed lunch to take away with you. For those travelling by train we will pick up at Milford Haven Station for the train that arrives around 4pm on the arrival day and we will drop off at Milford Haven for around 1pm on the departure day (we will be in touch closer to the start date to confirm the exact times as these are subject to train timetable changes).
What to Bring
- Towels x2 (1 beach and 1 bathroom)
- Wash kit & Personal medications
- Day sack
- Indoor shoes
- Wet shoes (ie: crocs, old trainers etc…)
- Rash vest (optional)
- Camera (optional)
- Drinks bottle and flask
- Lunch box
- Warm coat for evenings and cooler days
- Warm old clothing for outdoors (not jeans)
- Large bag for carrying wetsuit and snorkel equipment
- Waterproof jacket and trousers (can be hired)
- Vaseline (optional - if you have facial hair, the snorkel mask can leak, the Vaseline lessens this)
- Contact lenses (optional - you cannot wear glasses with a snorkel mask)
- Strong sensible shoes or boots for walking and thick socks
- Warm hat and gloves for inclement weather and sunhat and sun cream for sunny days.
- Enough cash for your time here, there are no cash points nearby
- Optional: wetsuit and snorkel gear. We can provide all snorkel equipment, but you are welcome to bring your own if you have it.